I know. I did it again. I said I was done racing until my marathon and then I heard about the Mother/ Daughter Division of the Women Run Arkansas 5K. How could I resist??
The Women Run Arkansas program has been around since 1997. This organization promotes health and fitness through running and walking. The WRA organizes free run/walk clinics for women, which are held for 10 weeks each spring. At the end of the 10 weeks there is a 5K held in Conway in which women from all over the state go to participate.
Last month a friend of mine who is the leader of the Searcy WRA clinic asked me to come speak to our local women’s group. I met a lot of great ladies who had been working hard toward their goal of run/ walking this 5k. Honestly I had not planned on running it myself because it was the weekend after the Toad Suck 10K and the weekend before my marathon. Then I heard about the Mother/Daughter division and I was very interested. I have never run this kind of race. Basically they would take the average time of a mother/ daughter team. I didn’t know if Abi would be interested but as soon as I told her she said, “Let’s do it!” I asked John what he thought about it. If he thought another race was too much I would have totally understood but he liked the idea of the mother/ daughter race too. So I registered us under the team name- Arkansas Runner Mom and Daughter. 🙂
Originally I planned on driving up early Saturday morning since Conway is about an hour from my house. Then John suggested that Abi and I make a mini girls trip and leave Friday after school. The race was supposed to have over 2,000 runners and I think he knew I would be a little stressed driving there and picking up our packets right before the race. So we left Friday afternoon and got to the Sporty Runner to pick up our packets with about 30 minutes to spare. I was able to meet in person Erin Henderson of See Mom Run who was a guest speaker for the weekend. Erin is so friendly and very down to earth. If you don’t know her inspiring weight loss and running journey you should check out her blog. She also has 12 children!
Once we had our race packets we drove to our hotel to get checked in and then we headed to dinner. Abi said, “I’m starving. How about Chick fil a?” I never thought of Chick fil a as the place to go when I’m starving but this was her special night so I let her pick. I would have preferred the pasta dinner the race was hosting but I didn’t want the race to consume the entire weekend so I let Abi pick. Then we did a little shopping at TJ Maxx and Target before heading back to the hotel. We ended the night with a few rounds of Uno. She loves games- just like her mama.
Before we went to bed Abi said, “We better lay out our flat mama and flat Abi!” Lol! Yes, I’ve created a monster. A sweet one though!
|Abi wanted us to be “mix-matchy with our colors.”|
I actually slept great and it was nice not having to wake up quite as early since we were already in Conway. We go to the race in plenty of time. I was able to get a little over a mile warm-up in while Abi waited patiently in the bathroom line and then we headed to the start.
|Team Arkansas Runner Mom and Daughter is READY!|
|Abi texted these two pics to John on our way to the race.|
The Women Run Arkansas 5K divides participants into two categories- runners and walkers. Apparently I had checked the wrong box for Abi (although I thought I did it the right way) because she was wearing a walker colored bib. I did not realize this until the RD came up to us both minutes before the start and told her that she was labeled as a walker. Abi was already nervous and she didn’t really understand what he meant. She started crying- which is not a great way to go into a race at all. She was confused and said she wanted to run not walk! I told her she could run and not to worry about it. The RD saw that he had upset/worried her so he came back over to us and assured us that we could switch her from the walker to runner category. He told us where to go after the race to fix it so that made Abi feel a little better. I knew this was not a great way for Abi to start a race but I was hoping she would be ok. I reminded her I would run back to finish with her once I finished.
I ran with a high school student the first half mile or so before taking the lead. I was not familiar with the course at all and there were quite a few turns for a 5K. Fortunately there was a police lead vehicle I was able to follow. I should add this is a very flat course and had it not been so hot and humid I think I could have been a little more consistent in my splits. Big time positive split!
Mile 1- 5:46
Mile 2- 5:57
Mile 3- 6:03
Mile 3.16- 0:53 (5:40 pace)
Official Finish Time:
Then I headed back for Abi on my cool-down. She was struggling a little. I think the starting line ordeal combined with the heat and humidity got to her. She still ran a great race and I could not be more proud of her for giving it all she had.
She finished in 26:42 which made our average time 22:40. This was good enough for a first place win in the mother daughter category! Official results can be found here.
Here are a few more random race awards pics from the morning in no particular order…
|My good friend and running buddy Kem came in 2nd overall!|
|Top 3 overall female runners|
|Thank you, Sporty Runner of Conway! What a perfect prize!|
|Just killing some time while we wait on awards…|
|Someone was sleepy…|
|After the race in our new race shirts- love the pink!|
Overall I would say this is a great race event. I will definitely do this one again. I would love to make this race a weekend tradition with my daughters in the years to come. Knowing that my time counted towards our team was a fun incentive and it was a special experience for Abi and I to share. So many women from all over the state trained for months to run or walk this 5K and I loved how this event brought everyone together to celebrate women’s fitness.
My mini girls weekend with Abi was a great jump start to Mother’s Day weekend. When I got home John and I decided to take the kids to see the Lego movie which had just started playing at the Rialto (our local dollar theater). You can’t beat $20 for a family of 6 to see a movie AND get drinks and popcorn! It was so funny and the kids loved it. I think our oldest son (age 8) laughed almost the entire time.
|Ashton said he was “looking like a Ninjago…”|
After church Sunday morning before lunch John took some pictures of me with the kids. The girls wore a new dress that Abi had picked out at TJ Maxx on our trip to Conway. That girl can shop! Anyway, these are some of my favorites from our mini pre-lunch photo shoot.
|So thankful for my J!|
That about covers Mother’s Day weekend. I hope it was good to you too. I am looking forward to seeing my own mom (and dad and sister) in just a few days in Pennsylvania where I will be running in my first marathon of 2014. I am very excited, anxious and nervous to be covering 26.2 miles again. I know I’ve put in the training and I hope I can execute a solid race performance Sunday morning. I’ll keep you posted…